Aphid Vectored Viruses

leaf infected with a virus

When we were developing the parameters of the grant proposal to fund this project, one of the major concerns voiced by growers in the Southeast was how to control aphid-vectored viruses.  

Virus pressure increases most intensely early in the summer when growers are at risk of losing their entire crop. Insecticide applications are not an effective strategy for managing virus diseases as aphids are able tol transmit viruses before the insecticide kills them. This has been an ongoing problem in the Southeast, but as climate conditions change, the Northeast is likely to experience an increase in these viruses as well. More mild winters allow aphids to persist where they normally would die.

John Murphy of Auburn University and his team are developing an innovative planting strategy that removes the virus from the aphids as they feed, reducing the risk of virus transmission throughout your fields. This strategy will be demonstrated at field days in Alabama.